Letter to the Editor: Planned Parenthood essential for cancer screenings

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Oct. 20, 2015

Oct. is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  In Oct., we see this awareness everywhere, including the color pink on clothing, social media and even in the National Football League (through their campaign partnered with American Cancer Society “A Crucial Catch”).  This awareness month promotes mammograms and other women’s health screenings.  Clearly, it is important.  However, one of the nation’s top providers for cancer screenings and prevention is facing major budget and funding cuts from the government.

Over the past few months, Planned Parenthood has been attacked and threatened with defunding.  Defunding will threaten a lot of aspects of Planned Parenthood, but one of the most serious threats would be to the accessibility of women’s health services.  Planned Parenthood does more than what the attackers are focused on.  Planned Parenthood provides a variety of women’s health services including sexually transmitted infection testing and treatment, urinary tract infection treatments, contraception, prenatal services and cancer screening and prevention.  They’re more broad in terms of women’s health services than just the abortions that many opponents Planned Parenthood argue against.  Because of its opponents and their beliefs, defunding Planned Parenthood has been seen in the news for the past few months.  Cutting money from a health-servicing program that is little-to-no cost to women should not be what this country is fighting to do.

Women’s health services should be accessible to all women.  Women’s health needs to be made imortant from the start.  Planned Parenthood is key because it provides a variety of services and resources to their clients for little or no cost.  While I recognize Planned Parenthood is not the only program to offer these services, it is one more option for women.  Women should have a variety of opportunities and options when receiving health care, no matter the service.  By defunding Planned Parenthood, it is one less option for women to receive major health services, including cancer screenings.

Olivia Brellenthin

Social Work BA

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